Joint Media Statement
1. The ASEAN Economic Ministers and Ministers from the People’s Republic of China, Japan and the Republic of Korea held their Tenth Consultations in Makati City, the Philippines on 26 August 2007. The consultations was co-chaired by H.E. Mr. Peter B. Favila, Secretary of Trade and Industry, the Philippines; H.E. Mr. Bo Xilai, Minister of Commerce, People’s Republic of China; H.E Mr. Akira Amari, Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry, Japan; and H.E. Mr. Cho Tae-yul, Deputy Minister for Trade of the Republic of Korea.
2. The Ministers exchanged views on the global economic situation and recent economic developments in ASEAN and the Northeast Asian countries. They noted the progress in economic integration in the region, and particularly noted that trade volume among ASEAN, China, Japan, and Korea expanded by 12.39 percent from US$ 315 billion in 2005 to US$ 354 billion in 2005. They reiterated the importance of continuing regional economic integration as a means to promote trade and investment flows.
Economic Cooperation Projects
3. The Ministers noted the progress of the implementation of economic cooperation projects. These projects cover a wide range of areas, including information technology (IT), small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), standards and quality conformance, environment, and logistics management. The Ministers endorsed the two new projects proposed by China on e-commerce and SME development.
Enhancing Regional Cooperation
4. The Ministers took note of the steady progress achieved in the ASEAN Plus Three cooperation in the last nine years, including the implementation of the various short, medium and long-term measures recommended by the East Asia Study Group (EASG), particularly the Network of East-Asian Think-Thank (NEAT) and East Asia Business Council (EABC).
5. The Ministers noted the follow-up work undertaken on the Phase II study on EAFTA since the 10th ASEAN Plus Three Summit. The ASEAN Ministers reiterated the need to prioritise the conclusion of the FTA plus One for further expansion covering East Asia. At the same time, the Ministers tasked the Senior Officials to study the recommendations of the Joint Expert Group.
Second Joint Statement on East Asia Cooperation
6. The Ministers noted the progress in the drafting of the Second Joint Statement on East Asia cooperation and its work plan to consolidate existing cooperation since 1997 and for future cooperation to be issued by 11th ASEAN Plus Three Summit in November 2007 in Singapore.
World Trade Organisation (WTO)
7. The Ministers exchanged views on the status of the Doha Round negotiations, particularly in light of the recent development in the negotiations in Geneva in July.
8. The Ministers shared a sense of urgency with regard to accelerating the multilateral negotiation process in Geneva beginning 3 September 2007, in order to conclude the Doha Round negotiations this year. In this context, the Ministers reiterated ASEAN Plus Three’s firm support for the efforts of the Chairs of the Negotiating Groups, especially, Agriculture and NAMA, and the WTO Director-General to build consensus on an ambitious and balanced outcome in the crucial months ahead. We will therefore work closely with other WTO Members and actively engage in the intensive negotiations scheduled for September 2007.
9. On our part, the ASEAN Plus Three Ministers remain prepared to make our own contribution to ensure a meaningful and successful outcome of the negotiations. They agreed to further accelerate discussion based on the Chair’s texts of draft modalities for Agriculture and NAMA issued on 17 July so that the Chairs can develop the revised texts promptly.
10. The Ministers reaffirmed their support to Lao PDR in its effort to accede to the WTO.
Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC)
11. The Ministers noted the outcomes of the meeting of APEC Ministers Responsible for Trade, held in Cairns, Australia, on 2-6 July 2007.
Asia Europe Meeting (ASEM)
12. The Ministers took note of the latest developments in ASEM. They welcomed the forthcoming ASEM Small and Medium Enterprises Ministerial Meeting, and Trade and Investment Fair to be held in Qingdao, China on 29 October – 1 November 2007. The Ministers took note that Indonesia will be hosting the Economic Ministers’ Meeting in 2008.
Preparations for the ASEAN Plus Three Summit
13. The Ministers noted the preparations being undertaken by Singapore for the ASEAN Plus Three, which will be held in Singapore in November 2007.
LIST OF MINISTERS
The 10th AEM Plus Three Consultations was attended by:
- H.E. Pehin Dato Lim Jock Seng, Second Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade, Brunei Darussalam
- H.E. Dr. Cham Prasidh, Senior Minister and Minister of Commerce, Cambodia
- H.E. Mr. Bo Xilai, Minister of Commerce, People’s Republic of China
- H.E. Dr. Mari Elka Pangestu, Minister of Trade, Indonesia
- H.E. Mr. Akira Amari, Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry, Japan
- H.E. Mr. Cho Tae-yul, Deputy Minister for Trade, Korea
- H.E. Dr. Nam Viyaketh, Minister of Industry and Commerce, Lao PDR
- H.E. Dato’ Seri Rafidah Aziz, Minister of International Trade and Industry, Malaysia
- H.E. U Soe Tha, Minister for National Planning and Economic Development, Myanmar
- H.E. Mr. Peter B. Favila, Secretary of Trade and Industry, the Philippines
- H.E. Mr. Lim Hng Kiang, Minister for Trade and Industry, Singapore
- H.E. Mr. Krirk-Krai Jirapaet, Minister of Commerce, Thailand
- H.E. Dr. Vu Huy Hoang, Minister of Industry and Trade, Viet Nam
- H.E. Mr. Ong Keng Yong, Secretary-General of ASEAN